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Low and Very Low Birthweight Babies

Time Range: 2008-2010       Resolution: Census Block Group

Low and Very Low Birthweight Babies is a measure of the adequacy of fetal growth during pregnancy. It can result from pre-maturity (gestational age less than 37 weeks), intrauterine growth retardation, or other factors. Low birthweight refers infants weighing less than 2,500 grams (about 5.5 pounds) at delivery and very low birthweight to infants less than 1,500 grams (3 lbs. 3 oz.).
Rationale
Low birthweight is a major cause of infant mortality and long-term health problems, and decreasing birthweights less than 2,500 grams are associated with increasing risk of death within the first year of life. In addition to increased risk of mortality, low and very low birthweight are associated with increased risk of disability, such as mental retardation, cerebral palsy, and vision and hearing disabilities.

Among the risk factors for low birthweight babies are low socioeconomic status, low level of education, nonwhite race, poor nutritional status, use of alcohol and drugs, environment and inadequate prenatal care.

Source
Connecticut Department of Health, Office of Vital Records - Birth Certificate. http://www.ct.gov/dph/cwp/view.asp?a=3132&q=394598

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